Thursday, 16 April 2015

Taiwan Day 2

Actually planned to get up as early as 630am, but ended up 1 hr later as we were both exhausted. Haha..

From Ximen Station to XinBeiTou Station.

XinBeiTou 新北投
Arriving at XinBeiTou Station.

Beitou Library 北投圖書館

Beitou Hot Spring Museum 北投溫泉博物館. Wanted to enter, but were required to take off our shoes, so never mind, we shall just enjoy the view from outside.

Plenty of artists crafting the beautiful scenery.

♫ Musical performance ♫

Beitou Geothermal Valley地熱谷
It was warm here despite the cold weather. Strong sulphuric smell as well, but the view was stunning, isnt't it? Smokey fumes could be observed~

Thanks to GoPro, we could get wide angle selfie pics easily! :D

To experience hot springs culture, there are plenty of baths; outdoor or indoor, high-class hotel or tub, private or public available. Of cos, price differs as well. We went to a pleasant hotel which costed us about NTD799 per hour. Our package includes a private room for clothes exchanging with a bathroom attached. Soap and bathing foams were also provided. The spring water was freaking hot. Soaked for about 20mins only as it was not advisable to soak for too long. To get ready after bathing, the 1 hour time limit was almost up as well. 

Man Ke Wu Ramen 满客屋拉面
Climbing further up the hill, you would catch this Ramen shop, selling Hot Spring Ramen. Used to be known as Man Ke Lai Hot Spring Ramen 滿來溫泉拉麵. The shop was rather small, visitors were a lot, but luckily turnover was quite fast. 
正油叉燒拉麵 (NTD120). Seriously this was the best ramen I had!

Side dishes of Fish Eggs 鱼卵 (NTD150) and Hot Spring Eggs 温泉蛋 (NTD25). Superb.

Zhong Xiao Dong Lu 忠孝东路
Dropped off at Zhongshan Station and walked our way to search for 肥前屋
A long queue~ We joined in and manage to get our spot after an hour later.

Unagi Don! Everyone's here for this!

Tamago as a side.
Took a walk at the famous shopping street, 忠孝东路 and of cos our food hunting journey never stop.

Dropping by at 東區粉圓 for some sweet treats.
GongGuan 公馆
We headed to Gong Guan next to hunt for sneakers. There was the night market there with lots of street foods as well, but we took a very heavy dinner at Mala Spicy Hot Pot馬辣頂級麻辣鴛鴦火鍋. It was a good meal with lots of quality foods and also good ice creams. :D

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Taiwan Day 1

We were freaking early the next morning after our KK tour to embark our new journey to Taiwan! So excited although this was not our 1st visit for both of us. Can't wait to explore more new places and foods! I actually did a very thorough planning of our itinerary of where to go. George even claimed that it was better than those by travel agencies as we had those different experiences in which tour groups could not provide. So obviously, I'm the tour guide for our trip. It was tiring but indeed very fruitful.

Taoyuan International Airport
Reaching Taoyuan International Airport around 1130am, we immediately proceeded to the telecommunication counter which was easily located after making a right turn upon exiting the luggage collection hall. Got our prepaid card for easy internet usage throughout our vacation. Without wasting time, we moved on to purchase our KuoKuang bus tickets to Taipei Main Station.
Comfortably waiting if or passengers to fill up the empty seats.

Taipei Main Station
After getting the Youth Card (For more info, visit from the Information Counter as the cards could allow us to enjoy special discounts in certain places, I searched for Uncle Tetsu's Cheesecake as it was recommended by many. Bought the whole cake and enjoy bits of it. It was really soft. Some people actually queued up to get the instantly made cakes, but we were in a rush, so I just got what they had there. Upon that, the next thing was to get EasyCard for easy access around Taiwan which could be used for buses, railways and Metro's rides.

Board on the metro to XiMenDing (XiMen Station) with our heavy luggages so that we could check in to our hotel (ColorMix Hotel). With the help of a local taxi driver, we found the hotel in a small alley within the bz and crowded shopping district. As the check-in time of most of the hotels there were abt 3pm, we were still quite early and left our bags at the counter so that we could head on shopping and eating without wasting time.

Good weather.. Not too cold.. Just nice..

王子起司马铃薯 😋😋 could not forget how good it was when I had it during my previous visit.

Too bad the pic was overexposed which I did not realize. Couldn't show how mouth-watering it was.

火焰骰子牛. They cooked the beef cubes on the spot with fire. 

It was so so so delicious!! Meat was tender and juicy, not losing the beef aroma, perfected with the added flavoring chosen (玫瑰矿盐). No regrets!

Another popular stall - 日式碳烤麻糍. Grilled mua chee which we could later select the seasonings we wanted. We went for one salty which I think was cheese and another one of sweet version which I think was teriyaki sauce. The cheese one tasted rather bland but the teriyaki one was quite ok.

Along our shopping routes, we also searched for the famous 赛门甜不辣.

Only tried this bowl of 甜不辣. Quite nice with all the fish balls, meat balls, horseradish together with the sweet paste. A new dish that I never taste before. Could be very filling if this was eaten all alone.

Miramar Shopping Centre
Took the metro to Jiannan Rd. Station to get to Miramar. Wanted to go for the Ferris wheel ride, but queue was rather long. So we just walked around and waited for the free shuttle bus to Shihlin Night Market.

Shihlin Night Market 士林夜市
Shihlin is a must visit night market in Taipei. You could get almost very local snacks here and also do some shopping for clothes. It's one of the largest in Taipei. However, it is really packed and crowded. Sometimes you just have to squeeze and push through your way to get around. Foods here are available in 2 sections, located along the streets and also underground.
Some seafoods you could get

Massive production of Taiwan famous oyster omelette. It's really delicious!

Cheap and yummeh beef steak you could get here.

Some foods we enjoyed for the night: Quail eggs, Grilled celery wrapped in bacon, Grilled Octopus 👍, Oyster Omelette 蚵仔煎, Deep fried chicken butt 七里香 (the best chicken butt I had so far), Beef steak with spaghetti and sunny side up (meat was so tender), Deep fried Yam with Egg Yolk 👍, Grilled Chicken Thigh Sausage (bursting tasty juice once you bite) and Red Bean Cake 红豆饼.

Got back to XiMenDing and continue walking around. Walk and shop to digest more and eat more! Haha! Found the famous 阿忠炭烤 for supper. We definitely walked a long way for this. Partly was because we lost our way. Still wasn't familiar with the road signs.

Select whatever you want and have it grilled. There were quite a number of people waiting before us. But it was worth the wait! ☺️

Monday, 6 April 2015

Hi KK!

Arrived at Kota Kinabalu early in the morning and welcomed by our warm "Angelababy", Ah Hui, who picked us up from airport and entertained us for the whole day. The 1st thg we did was of cos to have breakfast! Sang Nyuk Mee 生肉面 is one of Sabah's famous local dishes and it must not be missed. There are a couple of popular outlets in KK and Ah Hui took us to this Sinsuran Sang Nyuk Mee which was the usual place for her family.
This was George's order which of Sang Nyuk Mee Kosong (RM3), accompanied with a bowl of soup consisting of all those porky ingredients (RM5). Deliciously good.

So this was mine, which was the soup version, but I had all the ingredients mixed together (RM6.50). Ultra thin slices of pork meat! Yumms~

After a really appetizing breakfast, Ah Hui took the trouble to drive all the way to Shangri-la Rasa Ria Resort to enjoy the stunningly beautiful beach. 

Did not adjust my camera to the right mode, so all the photos taken were kinda overexposed. 

When we were on our way to the resort, we spotted 2 stretches of stalls selling coconuts including panggang, jelly, fresh juice and also Loham. So, we stopped by during our way back, curious of what the panggang coconut would taste like.
Coconut panggang displayed

Loham of different sizes

Coconut jelly! So good!

Coconut panggang which turned out to be kinda "siap siap" and slightly sourish in taste. Did not like it.

Loham. Very nice!

As we did not know what to do next, we went on our food hunt journey! Went to this place at Damai where Hui Hui recommended for their Roasted pork. Unfortunately, it was already finished and it was only 12noon. :( The place was so crowded especially with white-collared ppl. Not to waste Hui's effort of taking us there, we ordered the BBQ pork (Char Siew) and Roasted Chicken.
Nice. Too bad we did not get the chance to try the Roasted Pork.

As we were quite near to Foo Yuen 富源, so that's our next stop! Foo Yuen is very popular among the locals for its Roti Kahwin that they eventually open up a couple of franchise outlets. The one we visitedat Damai Plaza is the origin of it.
The toast was good! Love the steamed version. Bread was very soft n spongy except that I dislike the butter.

Well.. Hui did not have much and she took us to have cakes as she loves it and she knew that I like desserts too. Forgotten the name of the bakery shop. 
Cakes we had: yummeh~~

The variety of cakes offered! Too full to try the rest.

After all these food tasting session, we went back to our hotel to get a quick rest before meeting up Gary and Ivy who also happened to transit in KK for one night after their Taiwan trip. Hui picked them up and off we went to Sunset Bar which is located at Tanjung Aru Shangri-la Resort.

Beautiful sunset yea~


Enjoying sunset with cocktail

Ok... Next on was dinner! Hui brought us to Welcome Seafood Restaurant大茄来海鲜餐厅. Really impressed with the huge place. The whole stretch of shop was owned by them with each having their own kitchens to cater the huge crowds. That was good as we did not have to wait long.
Butter Chicken 


Stir fried Vegetables with Belacan

Butter crab

Fried tofu

Steamed prawns

Black pepper crab

Foods were fresh n reasonably priced. 

Last pic of the day which we took at Sky Blue Bar, enjoying KK city's night scenery. Thanks to them for giving George and I a surprise birthday celebration. :D

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